Golf in a Remote and Breathtaking Part of the World
An Andean condor, one of the world’s largest flying birds, occasionally sails beneath the snowy peak of the Lanín volcano, swoops through a valley and over the fairway at El Desafío Mountain Resort in Patagonia’s northwest region.Pumas, foxes and wild boars sometimes make their way near the course too, said Alfredo Bauer, who pauses his round of golf whenever he sees animals roaming. Mr. Bauer, 64, from Buenos Aires, built his vacation home at El Desafío, a private golf and polo community about 10 miles outside San Martín de los Andes, a city in Argentina’s Neuquén Province. “It’s still so pure here,” he said. “It’s my favorite place in the world.” El Desafío and the nearby Chapelco Golf & Resort are attracting international golfers seeking to connect with nature and play on courses with stunning views.
ImageEl Desafío Mountain Resort has polo fields, a golf course and a nature reserve.Credit…Eliseo Miciu
Designed by the Hall of Fame golfers Jack Nicklaus and Greg Norman, these courses have been integrated with the terrain and vegetation, taking a minimalist approach to highlight the pristine surroundings. Nongolfers have gravitated there too, building houses and working with landscape designers to preserve the native wildlife.